—In a letter to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Rep. Todd Stephens (R-Montgomery) demanded their study of PFAS on health include an investigation into cancer rates. He also called upon federal officials to join him in his effort.
According to a document released by the CDC, its study of the health impact of PFAS will exclude cancer rates.
“Several years ago, I was the first public official to call for a comprehensive health study so we can understand what health effects we face as a result of the federal government contaminating our drinking water,” Stephens said in the letter. “This is critical as we work to protect our residents’ health. Excluding cancers and other ailments in the national study is unacceptable and I implore you to correct this immediately.”
He also sent letters to U.S. Sens. Pat Toomey (R-Pa) and Bob Casey, Jr. (R-Pa) and Reps. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa).
PFAS, a chemical used to extinguish fires, has seeped into local drinking water from the Willow Grove Naval Base. Stephens has called on the federal government to fund the cleanup of area water and to conduct a local health assessment with long-term follow-ups.
Cancers of the kidneys, testicles and bladder had been linked to some PFAS chemicals in prior studies, along with thyroid disease, ulcerative colitis, high cholesterol, developmental effects and immunotoxicity. Ulcerative colitis and autoimmune diseases will also be excluded from the CDC study.
Several local residents affected by these serious health implications have contacted Stephens concerned about the lack of information regarding PFAS exposure.
“Just when I thought one federal agency-- the CDC-- was on the path to helping our community deal with the effects of the PFAS water contamination the federal government caused, along comes this news,” Stephens said.
Representative Todd Stephens
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: David Foster